Employer Record Keeping

Under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), employers are required to keep records on the hours worked and wages earned by their employees. The following information must be recorded by employers for employees subject to the minimum wage provisions or both the minimum wage and overtime pay provisions of the FLSA:

  • Employee's name, address, sex, birth date (if employee is under 19 years of age), and occupation
  • Hour and day when workweek begins
  • Total wages paid for each pay period
  • Date of wage payment and pay period covered
  • Total hours worked during each workday and each workweek
  • Total daily or weekly straight-time earnings
  • Regular hourly pay rate for any week when overtime is worked
  • Total overtime pay for the workweek
  • Any deductions from or additions to wages

The records that are required for exempt employees differ from those required for nonexempt employees. In addition, special information is required for:

  • Home workers
  • Employees working under uncommon pay arrangements
  • Employees who are provided with lodging or other facilities
  • Employees who are receiving remedial education

It is important to emphasize that it is the responsibility of the employer, not the employee, to keep accurate and up-to-date records of hours worked. In the event of an overtime lawsuit, courts often find that, where an employer failed to maintain accurate time records, the employee is entitled to recover what he or she determines is a reasonable and realistic estimation of hours worked. The burden of proof is on the employer to show that the hours estimated by the employee are inaccurate in order to dispute the claim to unpaid overtime.